Easy Medjool Dates & Prosciutto Appetizers

February 26, 2013

figs-appetizers

Do you ever stop into a supermarket and find some seasonal produce or fruit and think, wow, those are neato, but how do you eat them?  That’s what I thought when I encountered Medjool dates.  Also spelled “Medjul” elsewhere, these buggers are huge.  I mean, huge!  Don’t get me wrong, when I was a kid, I could eat my share of dates, but they were the red kind with a bright sweetness and a papery skin that could cause a minor choking episode.  Those dates are about one-third the size of Medjool dates (these are about 2 inches long and about 1/5 inches in diameter).

You sort of feel like eating just one is enough, due to its dense, meaty and fibrous flesh.  Of course, thanks to the power of suggestion, and my obsession with Instagram, I started seeing really cool ways people were serving them.  I looked up recipes online and got inspired. These hors d’oeuvres I made with Medjool dates were super easy: stuffed with chèvre (goat cheese), then wrapped with prosciutto.  Don’t forget to remove the pit from each date–very important!  I sprinkled it with pink salt and finished it with olive oil.  I felt the dates’ sweetness negated the delicate saltiness of the prosciutto.  I did try it dipped in some balsamic vinegar, which helped balance it somewhat, but I think it must be eaten while sipping on a glass of dry, red wine.  Or, just triple wrap the dates in prosciutto (I was going to say “mummify,” but that didn’t sound too appetizing).  By the way, I did eat all six of these hors d’oeuvres/appetizer thingies.  Oh, the fiber!

Note: a 16-ounce container of Medjool dates from Trader Joe’s can make about 22 appetizers.  Or, try dried black Mission figs instead, if you can’t find Medjools.  Also, Trader Joe’s carries the Mission figs more regularly.  They have a similar chewy consistency and sweetness, but not as sticky.  Have you made an appetizer like this before?  Let me know if you try this!

 

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